La Rocchetta Mattei is a fairy-tale castle built by Count Cesare Mattei, starting from 1850, in Savignano in the municipality of Grizzana Morandi. Restored for two thirds by the Carisbo Foundation, which owns it, after years of closure it reopened to the public in 2015, ensuring the usability of one of the most curious, mystical and secret places to visit in the Emilian countryside.
Rocchetta Mattei History
Built on the hill overlooking the town of Grizzana Morandi, in the Bologna area, the Rocchetta Mattei was built at the behest of Count Cesare Mattei, a literate, politician and self-taught doctor, founder of electromeopathy, a practice founded on homeopathy.
Built on the ruins of the Rocca di Savignano, destroyed in 1293, the structure of the castle went through several construction phases with numerous additions and modifications, making it a labyrinth of towers, monumental stairways, reception rooms, private rooms that recall different styles: from the neo-medieval to the neo-renaissance , from Moorish to Liberty.
The foundation stone was laid on November 5, 1850 and already in 1859 it was considered habitable, so much so that the count never moved away from it, leading a life as a medieval lord with a lot of court.
The castle was home to illustrious personalities who came from all over to undergo the care of Mattei. It seems that even the guests of the Rocchetta were Tsar Alexander II and Ludwig III of Bavaria. Even Dostoevskji mentions the Count in "The Karamazov brothers", when he tells the devil that he managed to recover from terrible rheumatism thanks to a book and some drops from the Count.
In the following years, he devoted his efforts to the study and popularization of alternative medicine that christened Electromeopathy, a practice that assured him world fame, and following his death in 1896, it was continued with mixed fortunes by the heirs until 1959. In that 'year, the Rocchetta was sold to the wife of a local merchant Primo Stefanelli called "Il Mercantone". The latter managed it as an attraction until it was abandoned in the 1980s. In 2005, the Cassa di Risparmio di Bologna Foundation (Carisbo) purchased the castle and after a careful design study began the consolidation and underwent a large and rigorous restoration. Reopened to the public, the Rocchetta has become a popular tourist destination in the Bologna area, due to the grandeur of the spaces and the eclecticism of the architecture, rich in hidden esoteric symbolism.